Late Light over Skye

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When you visit Lochalsh and Skye one of the first things which will steal your artistic heart is the light quality. The clear air and the water all around, bounce this light in fascinating and incredible ways, leading to beautiful sights around almost every corner. In the winter they days up here are short, and wonderful colour filled sunsets are easy to catch, however in summer the days go on for ever.
On a clear sunny summers day it’s almost too bright for taking good photos, but the morning and the evening give wonderful lighting for atmosphere filled photos. Around midsummer this far north, morning is very early, with sunrise currently happening at around 4:30am, but the soft morning light goes on for many hours.
Sunset is currently around 10:30, and you get lovely softened light from 7 pm onwards. This means that the traditional golden hour for perfect photographic lighting, is actually several hours long up here. The remaining 6 hours of the day when the sun has dropped below the horizon, are filled with beautiful gloaming light, and even in the few hours of proper darkness, there is a small pool of turquoise light sitting in the northern sky.

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These photos were taken around 7pm on a beautiful warm midsummer evening, looking across the Inner Sound towards Breakish and Broadford on the Isle of Skye

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About greenmackenzie

Hi, I'm Seonaid, and I share my home with my husband, my son and a collection of cats and dogs. I am forever snapping shots of things which catch my eye. I love art which is here now and gone tomorrow...like food and nature...but also have a passion for vintage and the ancient past! Nature is my favourite muse, with her wild ever shifting seasons. I have been using and teaching mindfulness and relaxation for over 12 years, and have yet to become any sort of expert :-) I'm a Psychotherapist, and run the Maggies Highlands Cancer Centre, in Inverness, Scotland.
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28 Responses to Late Light over Skye

  1. ladyfi says:

    That light is pristine and clear! Gorgeous.

  2. LB says:

    The extended Golden Hour alone would be worth the trip over!
    Fabulous place and photos!

  3. These are the days when we forget the gloominess of winter….not a day goes by when I don’t see something I need to grab my camera for. I noticed this morning that the sun was rising in a very different place than it did in the winter. And of course we are nearing the summer solstice this weekend.
    Lucky you, to have so many golden hours to enjoy your beloved landscapes. Thanks for sharing them with us.

  4. Robin says:

    Lovely light, and stunning shots. I was astounded at how long the days are when I first visited Scotland in the summer months.

    • I know, wonderful isn’t it, and it aways surprises and delights me again each year as the days get longer and longer…..of course it does mean we get very long winter nights!

  5. Lovely shots. We are so looking forward to returning to Skye in September for a holiday. We used to visit regularly but have been trying out other islands in recent times. All differently beautiful in their own way, but there is nothing to quite beat the pull of Skye and all its magic.

  6. Fabulous – makes me ‘home sick’ i.e. a trip north is long overdue.

  7. gwynnrogers says:

    I do so agree with all of the comments. Your shots are breath-taking. I am surprised though that you have about a half hour more light than we do. Our days lately have been gloomy. I sure wish you were near so you could teach me to use my camera better. Your pictures are so vivid and glorious! I do miss your “extras” though! πŸ˜‰ Give them a pat or two from me!

    • Gwynn, I think you underestimate your camera skills, but I would happily share some tips and thoughts with you if I deed you were closer πŸ™‚
      Where do you live that you have almost as much summer light as Scotland?
      Oh and the dogs loved their extra pats πŸ™‚

      • gwynnrogers says:

        Seonaid, I live in Poulsbo, Washington State. It is across the Puget Sound from Seattle, so we are about an hour and a half from the Canadian border. So we are quite far north.

        I used to use my old camera quite a lot. Where I have the artistic visions, my technological capabilities can’t hold a flicker of a flame to yours! Now I have a digital camera and I’m a techno-idiot! I’ll have to find your email address so you can laugh at some of my pictures. I don’t use my camera much because I’m so discouraged with how the pictures look.

  8. I knew there was some special secret to the beautiful light which illuminates nearly all of your photos. Latitude … it’s all in the latitude! Should have known. For comparison, sunrise today was at 5:36AM and sunset will occur at 8:44PM … so you’ve got 4 more hours of daylight … and most of that is ‘golden.’ Totally jealous (again). D

    • David, so sorry to keep invoking jealousy…..all that golden light is a great reason to visit Scotland though πŸ™‚
      Latitude…..now what’s the difference between you and here I wonder….4 hours is a significant difference in day length……but of course it translates to very long, 4 hours longer, winter nights!

      • I’m at 41N and you’re at 56N … that’s an approximate distance of nearly 1000 miles! Yikes. No wonder you’ve got so much more light (and dark) than I! Still … I envy its quality … to clear and crisp. Right now we’re experience hot and very humid weather and the air seems thick; nothing like your seemingly endless horizons. D

  9. How wonderful to have sunset at only 10-30. I really miss the light evenings, living here in South Africa. Your skies are really beautiful. πŸ™‚

    • Yes I love the late summer evenings which seem to go on forever…..I always notice how suddenly the sun seems to set when we travel southwards….but in South Africa I’m imagining the sun literally seems to drop from the sky?

  10. boxertreiber says:

    Now you have give me a reason to come back again πŸ™‚

  11. Lucid Gypsy says:

    I so love these long days we’re having right now, although not quite as long as yours!

  12. restlessjo says:

    It just isn’t possible to pass one of your posts by, Seonaid! Absolutely breathtaking shots πŸ™‚

    • My Jo, what a great compliment…..and you’re used to seeing so many beautiful sights on your walks, that that’s praise indeed! The light and the clouds were so beautiful that I sat for a while soaking in the scene and the peace…until of course the dogs got impatient with me!

  13. Jet Eliot says:

    It’s a great treat when good light lasts longer than usual. Spectacular photos.

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